Welcome to Libertas Chambers Leading specialists in Business Crime, Professional Discipline & Asset Recovery

Libertas is a dynamic and progressive chambers, offering a range of specialisms across a national presence.

"His knowledge and willingness to fight for a client are of the highest level."
Chambers & Partners 2024 - Simon Csoka KC

Libertas Chambers

A Forward-thinking set of chambers with a national presence

Libertas Chambers boasts an impressive array of experienced barristers in several practice areas.  We took advantage of recent challenges to rethink the model of a chambers based on criminal and regulatory law and set up on a virtual basis.

This enabled us to create a national service for solicitors and clients by having high quality conference suites in major cities. In London we retain premises in the heart of the City.

Our members provide a high-quality service with access to modern facilities throughout the country.

Read more about us

Areas of Practice & Expertise

Our carefully selected and highly skilled collection of experts provide a national and international service to all Libertas clients. Providing you with a first-class advocacy and advisory service across the following areas (and many more).

If you would like to discuss an alternative area of law please contact our clerking team who will provide you with immediate advice and support.

Business Crime

Our barristers have established national and international reputations for their expertise, experience and confidence in Fraud, Financial Services and Business Crime and Compliance – they are consistently ranked as leaders in the field. We advise and represent individuals and entities in relation to financial, regulatory, and fraud investigations in the UK, and overseas. Our clients include financial institutions and corporations, as well as: politicians entrepreneurs company directors and chief executives chartered accountants lawyers IFAs and medical and other professionals We therefore have accumulated experience dealing with the Financial Conduct Authority, Serious Fraud Office, National Crime Agency, HMRC, National Trading Standards, FACT, as well as other investigating and prosecuting bodies. International Business Crime Many of our cases have an international dimension and we are accordingly experienced dealing with overseas authorities including the US Department of Justice, the Securities and Exchange Commission and EU, Indian and Australian authorities. Practitioners specialise in trans-jurisdictional terrorist financing, proscribed wildlife trading, and export control violations. Members of our team have previously worked in the banking and commercial sectors and within their regulatory regimes. Others have had advisory and disciplinary roles regulating the accounting (FRC, ACCA, CIMA) and medical (GMC) sectors.  Some of us prosecute for these agencies as well as defending, and advise on and conduct internal investigations, or act as disclosure counsel. We understand how regulators and prosecution authorities work. Practitioners lecture and advise on corporate responsibility for human rights. We are often involved in an advisory role at the start of regulatory or criminal investigations. Our experience, attention to detail and dedication to our clients assists them in responding appropriately with the object of avoiding prosecution. When proceedings are commenced, we work to ensure that our clients receive the best advice and representation and, most importantly, a fair hearing. Business Crime Conduct Our work covers a wide range of conduct, recently including: Bribery and corruption, including European government officials Cartel Offending Commercial property fraud Corporate compliance with human rights obligations Environmental protection, including carbon credit and land fraud, wildlife trading and international illegal logging EU, National and Devolved Government grant scheme frauds Export Control violations Fraud and cheating in the sports sector (cricket, rugby, horse-racing) Fraudulent trading Insider trading, market manipulation and abuse Insolvency and bankruptcy offending Intellectual property theft Investment (boiler-room) fraud and Ponzi mis-selling Money laundering, restraint, confiscation and asset forfeiture Pension mis-selling and liberation frauds Professional discipline Tax Evasion SPV’s inc. film and insurance schemes MTIC & carousel fraud PAYE, payroll and C.I.S. frauds Duty diversions Terrorist financing Trading Standards prosecutions in clothing, energy switching and ticketing sectors Web-site ghosting and internet advance-fee frauds Whistle-blowing and deferred prosecution agreements We advise and represent well-known corporate clients and individuals in sensitive situations with discretion as well as vigour. Please call our Clerking team on 020 7036 0200 to discuss any particular requirements you may have.

Criminal Defence

Libertas Chambers brings together some of the country’s leading criminal defence specialists. Exceptional juniors and renowned Queens Counsel provide quality representation from the Supreme Court, through the Crown Courts across London and the Circuits and in the Magistrates Court. Members of Libertas Chambers also regularly appear in quasi-criminal jurisdictions where their experience in the criminal courts provides a cutting edge service in regulatory and professional disciplinary proceedings. Chambers accept instructions in both publicly and privately funded work and members provide specialist and strategic advice at all stages of a criminal case, from pre-charge investigation through to trial and appeal. Members of Chambers have appeared in some of the most high-profile criminal cases of recent times, including Operation Elveden (selling stories about Prince William and Prince Harry to The Sun), R v H and C [2004] 2 AC 134 (leading case on disclosure), R v Jogee [2016] UKSC 8 (clarifying an error in the law in accessorial liability) and R v Lewis [2017] EWCA Crim 1734 on the approach to joint principalship. Areas Of Criminal Defence Expertise Our members are regularly instructed in the following key areas of criminal defence practice: Appellate Homicide Corporate manslaughter Terrorism Drug trafficking Serious and organised crime, including corruption and bribery International crime Human trafficking Modern Slavery Fraud Cyber crime Robbery Serious assaults Kidnaping Serious sexual offences Environmental health offences Trading standards prosecutions RSPCA prosecutions Our criminal defence barristers offer expert advice to a wide range of external authorities and regularly provide training and lectures on current topics to other members of the legal profession, experts and those who work within the wider criminal justice system.

Regulatory Law

Our members have substantial experience defending individuals and companies in regulatory law matters before professional tribunals or the First-tier Tribunal (General Regulatory Chamber) and above. What distinguishes us from other regulatory barristers specialising in regulatory work is that clients will benefit from our skills and experience as criminal advocates. WHAT IS REGULATORY LAW? Many professions are regulated by professional standards boards and codes of conduct. These codes of conduct can be subject to frequent change and are becoming more demanding and sophisticated and, in some cases, opaque. If a regulatory agency believes that offences have taken place, they have broad powers of investigation. They can conduct inspections, seize documents, compel suspects to answer questions, conduct interviews under caution, serve statutory notices, and take enforcement action, including prosecution. If you need help, our regulatory law barristers can provide legal support and representation. REGULATORY LAW OUR BARRISTERS SPECIALISE IN Our members specialise in many areas of regulatory law, including: Professional Discipline Regulatory Prosecutions We can assist with regulatory bodies, including: – The Financial Services Authority – The Health and Safety Executive – Food Standards Agency – The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills – Environment Agency – HM Revenue & Customs WHY CHOOSE OUR REGULATORY BARRISTERS? Contentious regulatory law work often requires a robust defence, strategic advice and preparation, and skilful cross-examination of witnesses. The lack of hard-fought trial experience in some regulatory practitioners means that the witnesses may not be put under the degree of sustained pressure in cross-examination that the client is entitled to and expects. We believe that any individual or corporate entity facing a serious regulatory law accusation is entitled to the same robust defence as a defendant in a criminal case. The consequence of a false regulatory accusation can be just as damaging and life-changing as a false accusation of a criminal offence. Professionals can be vulnerable to malicious complaints. The only way to tackle these successfully is to use the skills honed in the criminal courts to uncover false accusations. We understand that these cases often cross over between criminal, civil, regulatory and disciplinary proceedings. We are also very aware of both the commercial and emotional impact these cases can have on clients and have a lot of experience supporting our clients through the challenges. We are also well-versed in working with insurers, unions and defence organisations. The regulatory law team includes trained mediators and members with experience working within the City and in-house with regulators. Contact Our Regulatory Law Barristers If you would like to speak with a member of our team, there are plenty of ways to contact Libertas Chambers. Our clerks will be only too happy to recommend the most appropriate barrister or combination of barristers for each individual case.

Civil Litigation

There can often be a very thin line between conduct which is criminal in nature or which amounts to commercial fraud only. The correct advice and selecting the right remedy can make all the difference. Some cases are best left to be prosecuted in criminal courts, where the offender faces the prospect of penal consequences. In other cases, seeking remedies in a commercial or a civil court may be more expedient for you to recoup your losses. And then, there are cases where you may want to explore both possibilities simultaneously. Types of Civil Litigation Civil litigation can encompass a broad range of disputes that will directly enact a number of legal matters. A civil litigator will therefore tend to specialise in a specific practice area. Some of the most common types of civil litigation include: disputes and laws that encompass landlords and tenants environmental law products liability intellectual-property disputes construction medical malpractice employment and labour issues anti-trust laws real estate worker’s compensation, and education law Our Civil Litigation Barristers At Libertas, we pride ourselves on having barristers who have vast experience in multiple domains. We can advise you on selecting the correct remedy for your situation. We assist you with advice that lets you form an informed view. Our members routinely provide pre-litigation advice that helps you form a comprehensive legal overview of your situation and the possibilities. Contact Libertas Chambers today to discuss representation for any civil litigation matter.

Public Law & Human Rights

Libertas Chambers enjoys a leading reputation at the public law and human rights bar. Our barristers frequently appear in the Administrative Court and Upper Tribunal in judicial review hearings and administrative appeals. We help our clients pursue public law challenges against all public authorities, including government departments, courts and tribunals, coroners, the police, housing authorities, schools and prisons. Judicial Review Judicial Review proceedings enable challenges to decisions made by Courts and Tribunals, by regulators and by bodies whose public functions impact individuals and companies. This jurisdiction is an essential protection of the individual’s rights against administrative irrationality or excess. We have specialist experience seeking Judicial Review in cases flowing from our other practice areas, challenging decisions in criminal and quasi-criminal investigations. Members have acted for claimants seeking to challenge decisions made by the police, the Ministry of Justice, the Home Office, the Crown Prosecution Service, the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC), the Information Commissioner, the Asset Recovery Agency, the Legal Services Commission, the Magistracy, Judges and various Tribunals. These cases have included: challenges to the lawfulness of pre-charge search warrants decisions to prosecute children actions by solicitors resisting Special Procedure search warrants challenges to the legality of the application of the sending procedure by Magistrates Courts preserving the anonymity of young offenders in extreme cases the applicability of the reasonable time requirements in Article 6 to enforcement of Confiscation Proceedings decisions on appellate referral by the CCRC treatment of prisoners and the review of Parole Board decisions. Criminal Trials Within the criminal trial process, our members have expertise at first instance on: domestic appeal and applications in the European Court of Human Rights and the OHCHR challenging a range of human rights violations, as well as the compatibility of primary and secondary legislation with the European Convention for the Protection of Fundamental Human Rights and Freedoms (ECHR) such as the hearsay provisions in CJA 2003, the reverse burden in s.90 Financial Services Act 2012 the Attorney-General’s exercise of the right of nolle prosequi We act nationally and internationally for people whose human rights are in issue in other forums, including actions against the police, extradition, international law, prisoners’ rights, and at Coronial Inquests. Why Choose Our Human Rights Barristers? Libertas Chambers’ members have advised and acted on behalf of individuals, governmental organisations and major NGOs in providing international human rights expertise. Our members provide advice and representation in cases concerning Prison Law, including issues relating to prisoners’ welfare, Parole Board hearings, and the release and recall of prisoners. Coronial Inquests engage the rights of many groups; members have experience representing interested parties, insurers and the families of the deceased. We offer particular expertise where there is a potential engagement of criminal or regulatory proceedings, acting for insurers and their policyholders.

Private Prosecutions

The prosecution of alleged criminals for wrongdoing is generally the domain of the Crown and its specialist agencies. But increasing budgetary constraints on investigating and prosecution agencies mean that many miscreants can avoid being held to account in the Criminal Courts for their actions. Why Private Prosecutions? When State prosecutors decide they cannot or will not prosecute, the law allows private individuals to prosecute allegations of wrongdoing. Initiating a private prosecution puts you in court as the prosecutor, adopting the mantle of the prosecution agency. Who Can Bring A Private Prosecution? A private prosecution can be brought by any individual or company – it is not solely an option for the police, CPS or government agency. In the past, private prosecutions were more common among charitable or public interest bodies. But more recently, section 6(1) has been increasingly used by individuals and commercial entities as an alternative to or alongside civil litigation. Which offences can be privately prosecuted? Subject to certain exceptions, private prosecutions can be brought for a wide range of offences where the CPS have not initiated criminal proceedings, including: Fraud Property disputes Assault Sexual offences Harassment Perverting the course of justice Blackmail Manslaughter/murder Private Prosecution Barristers Private prosecutions are a specialist area of the law. The right to prosecute, and seek punishment of offenders, brings with it the responsibility of ensuring a fair trial and the obligation to conform to all the rules applicable to any prosecuting agency. Those rules are often complex and diffuse. At Libertas Chambers, our barristers are experienced in liaising with potential prosecuting authorities and advising how to assemble the best case for the prosecution, taking the case to court and seeking justice, even where the Crown Prosecution Service or other prosecution agencies cannot or will not act. Importantly, this includes continuing advice on the recovery of compensation and some or all of litigation costs from defendants or Central Funds. We start by helping you assess your evidence, advising you on the right forum in which to litigate and on the merits of your case, then working with the best private prosecution solicitors to put together and finally present your case at trial, ensuring continuity of representation and consistency of approach. Members of chambers can offer advice about the particular issues that arise in private prosecutions, including: the prospects of success, applying for and resisting the issue of a summons, applications to the Director of Public Prosecutions to take over and stop a prosecution, presenting and resisting abuse of process arguments recovery of costs. If you would like to find out more information about private prosecutions, please contact our clerks to arrange an initial consultation to discuss the merits of your case.

International Criminal Law

At Libertas Chambers, our barristers are distinguished experts in international criminal law, specialising in a range of serious international offences, including genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. Our team provides robust representation in international courts and tribunals, offering both advisory and litigious solutions. If you require legal expertise that navigates complex international jurisdictions with precision, contact us today to see how we can assist in your case. Our Expertise in International Criminal Law At Libertas Chambers, we provide specialised legal representation in international criminal law, boasting a team of barristers experienced in high-stakes international cases. Our expertise encompasses a wide range of severe international crimes, such as: Genocide Torture Crimes against humanity War crimes (including cases tried in military tribunals) We are equipped to handle complex legal challenges across various international forums, ensuring meticulous advice, effective advocacy, and dedicated support tailored to each case’s unique demands. Whether navigating international criminal courts or engaging in detailed advisory roles, our barristers are committed to delivering justice and upholding the rule of law globally. Why Choose Our International Criminal Law Barristers? Our barristers at Libertas Chambers bring extensive experience in international criminal law, having represented clients before International Criminal Courts and Tribunals. Their expertise includes complex appeals involving genocide, crimes against humanity, and joint criminal enterprise. Our members’ expertise extends to navigating universal and extraterritorial jurisdiction, transnational human trafficking, statelessness, and citizenship issues. They are adept at advising on complementarity issues in international criminal law investigations, the intersection of domestic criminal law with international crimes, and related matters involving International Humanitarian Law, Human Rights, and Terrorism as an international crime. Areas of Specialisation International Terrorism Law: Our members have a distinguished record in handling international terrorism cases, representing clients in both domestic and international courts, including trial and appellate levels. Extradition and Financial Crime: We are also recognised for our expertise in extradition law, especially in cases involving multinational financial crimes. Additional International Engagements: Our barristers have contributed their expertise across the Commonwealth and in the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, dealing with death penalty cases abroad. We proudly list members who serve at the International Criminal Court (ICC) and the Kosovo Specialist Chambers (KSC) in The Hague, as well as those who have appeared in the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC).

CONNECT WITH US FOR THE LATEST NEWS & UPDATES

Felicity was instructed by the Australian Centre for International Justice and led Daye Gang of the Victorian Bar You can read the JFM press release here justiceformyanmar.org/press-r…

About 5 months ago from LibertasChambers's Twitter via Publer.io

Latest News
Gerard Hillman and Adrian Kayne successful in defence of first defendant in Operation Silver Gerard and Adrian’s client was arrested with 2 kg of cocaine and a large amount of adulterant on 2 separate occasions less than a month apart. Operation Silver involved the supply of vast amounts of heroin, cocaine and MDMA.  Evidence included the conspirators use of over 800 kg of adulterant. Gerard and Adrian’s client’s defence was based on their client being a modern slave.  The jury unanimously acquitted their client on all counts after a 6-week trial. Gerard and Adrian were instructed by Tom Trobe of Pure Law Solicitors in Cardiff.
Libertas Chambers
James Doyle Defends Client In 8 Day Firearms Trial At Croydon CC James Doyle, instructed by Goran Stojsavljevic of Berkeley Square Solicitors, defended Sheraz Majeed in an 8 day trial at Croydon Crown Court in respect of allegation of 8 counts of firearms offences. The defendant ran a dry-cleaners in Thornton Heath, which was the subject of a raid by firearms officers in October 2020 as part of Operation Trident in execution of a search warrant following a shooting in nearby Mitcham. An automatic Glock 17 firearm, together with two silencers and 48 bullets were found by the police in a laundry basket at the back of the defendant’s shop. The defendant, who worked 6 days per week in his shop, denied all knowledge of the weapon. He was unable to explain how it had got into the laundry basket in his shop. The defendant employed four people at the time of the raid. None of those individuals were arrested. At trial, the prosecution stated that the police had found “an assassin’s toolkit”. The defendant was unanimously acquitted on the 8 counts he faced on the trial indictment alleging offences of possession of the firearm, the two silencers and the ammunition with intent to endanger life and simple possession of those items.
Libertas Chambers
Darren Snow defends at the NMC on Sexual Assault Allegations Darren Snow, instructed by Zach Jones of the Royal College of Nursing Legal Team, defended a nurse before the NMC Fitness to Practice Panel in respect of multiple allegations of sexual assault against a patient and colleague. The allegations spanned between 2012 and 2017. Darren’s client had been initially cleared in a 2012 hospital investigation and then acquitted of all charges in a crown court trial. The Nursing & Midwifery Council then instigated fitness to practice proceedings culminating in a hearing in May 2024, by which time the allegations were all very old and the NMC case relied upon witnesses who had already given evidence in the crown court trial where the jury had found the nurse not guilty. The defence team were able to use transcripts from the crown court trial as well as documents from the original hospital investigation to demonstrate the unreliability of the evidence, inconsistencies in the witness accounts and secure the exclusion of significant hearsay material on grounds of unfairness. All charges were dismissed by the Fitness to Practice Panel hearing the case.
Libertas Chambers
Latest Insights
Sending Christine Keeler to prison was a National disgrace By Dr Felicity Gerry KC I am delighted to see our campaign for the posthumous exoneration of Christine Keeler being covered for 4 days in The Mirror. The campaign is being brought by her son Seymour Platt who was left the task of telling her real story in her will. At the height of the “Profumo Scandal” Christine was the victim of a violent assault by a man called Lucky Gordon. He was prosecuted but sacked his lawyers and represented himself. In cross examination of her, he admitted assaulting her. She told the police she had not mentioned two other witnesses because they asked her not to. On the suggestion that she had lied about about who was present, Gordon’s conviction was quashed by the Court of Appeal (the court unusually expressing their belief that Christine was telling the truth). Nonetheless she was prosecuted for perjury and PCJ. She pleaded guilty and was sent to prison. She was under terrible pressure. For example, news reports account members of the public throwing eggs at her outside the Old Bailey in Stephen Ward’s trial where she was also wrongly accused of being a sex worker. Ward took his life before verdicts on whether it could be shown he was not living on her “immoral” earnings. These events framed Christine Keeler appallingly for the rest of her life, as Seymour Platt has explained in the Mirror. The law on the charges Christine faced (despite being a victim) only applies if there is a “material lie”. That Christine did not state that two other men were present when she was violently assaulted was totally irrelevant, especially as a proper investigation would have revealed they saw the attack and because her attacker admitted in court he assaulted her The Criminal Cases Review Commission is now quite properly investigating the case. The implications of the comments her silk Jeremy Hutchinson QC made at the time made it obvious she pleaded guilty when she was not, and she was shamed, unlike others whose reputation has been restored. There is a real risk that she was wrongly convicted. Sending her to prison was dreadful and she rightly deserves a posthumous exoneration. It would also go a long way to reframing a case that is the epitome of slut shaming, fitting with modern CPS guidance on violence against women and girls
Libertas Chambers
Chambers Article: Rule 25.9(2)(c): Defence Statements and ‘openings’ Traditionally in England and Wales the defence may give an opening address at the start of the defence case, but only where evidence is to be called other than from the accused person. In many cases this means that the issues are not identified clearly until a late stage and in long cases there can be an advantage to the prosecution to dominate the trial issues. In a recent webinar we discussed this topic of delivery of defence openings / summary of issues and how defence statements can be framed to support a defence opening. This article is a summary of the key provisions discussed. Click below to read in full. Download Article now To stay up to date with insight articles, webinars and chamber news why not subscribe to Libertas Lens (our periodic newsletter) – Click here to register
Libertas Chambers
Chambers Article: The ‘Fediverse’ vs P2P: The next generation of digital forensics The courts of England and Wales may still be dealing with the many EncroChat-related prosecutions, but technology has already moved on. While many are focused on AI and its potential for misuse, what some overlook are the networks on which these platforms operate. You may never have heard of the ‘fediverse’ but, if you practise criminal law, you should understand the basics, says Benjamin Knight. Click below to read in full. Download Article now To stay up to date with insight articles, webinars and chamber news why not subscribe to Libertas Lens (our periodic newsletter) – Click here to register
Libertas Chambers
Latest Events
Dr Felicity Gerry KC will be at the International Bar Association Conference in Paris from 29 Oct to 3 Nov Dr Felicity Gerry KC will be at the International Bar Association Conference in Paris from 29 Oct to 3 Nov – She is the Asia Pacific Member of the Criminal Law Committee –  if you are attending, she would be delighted to meet you Conference details here  #IBA2023 https://www.ibanet.org/conference-details/CONF2244. Felicity is currently awaiting verdicts in the Al Hassan trial at the ICC and drafted the memorandum that led to the $82m divestment of the Golden City Investment Scheme in Myanmar. She was recently listed as one of the top 5 international lawyers you would want on your side – details here https://lawandcrime.com/partner-content/meet-the-top-5-international-lawyers-you-want-on-your-side/amp/
Libertas Chambers
Celebrating South Asian Heritage Month NOTE: This event has now been cancelled. Libertas Chambers members celebrate South Asian Heritage Month (SAHM) with a wide-ranging panel discussion on legal issues and careers to honour, recognize, and appreciate South Asian history and culture, as well as to comprehend the rich cultural legacy of countries within South Asia. This webinar presented by our members celebrates the accomplishments and legacy of individuals with origins in the South Asian countries. Presented by our members with South Asian heritage who have expertise in corporate and criminal law on issues concerning South Asian business, countries and heritage in celebration of South Asian heritage month. We are proud to have several practitioners of South Asian origin, which make up 20% of our staff and a collective command of 8 different regional languages. To ensure you don’t miss out on future events please register for our newsletter by clicking here.
Libertas Chambers
Webinar Video – Defence Statements and Openings: Rule 25.9 and being fair and concise We recently held a webinar on Defence Statements and Openings: Rule 25.9 and being fair and concise. A practice is growing of asking Defence Counsel to open 1 or 2 sentences after the prosecution opening in serious cases which may not be in accordance with the Criminal Procedure Rules. Rule 25.9, taken together with the overriding objective allows for a fair and concise rehearsal of the issues raised in the defence statement or alternatively for the jury to be given the defence statement. This webinar discusses the delivery of defence openings / summary of issues, how defence statements can be framed to support a defence opening, and what is the bare minimum for opening defence issues which is fair. Presented by Dr Felicity Gerry KC and Marie Spenwyn Felicity and Marie have significant experience defending in the most serious of criminal matters including homicide, terrorism and war crimes. Both are co-authors of The Sexual Offences Handbook (3rd Ed forthcoming). They are well versed in taking procedural challenges and taking the best strategic approaches for clients.   To ensure you don’t miss out on future events please register for our newsletter by clicking here.
Libertas Chambers